Celebration of Lights sets Rider's diversity aglow

The event demonstrates how different traditional cultural holidays are celebrated throughout the world
Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The broad spectrum of Rider University’s diverse community will be represented by Rider’s multicultural groups during the annual Celebration of Lights.

The event, held Thursday, Nov. 21, from 5-6 p.m. in the SRC atrium, aims to demonstrate and raise awareness of how different traditional cultural holidays are celebrated throughout the world. Cultures from several continents, including Africa, Asia, South America and Europe, will be on display, showcasing how the holiday season is celebrated throughout the world.

“We are a diverse community and we should celebrate those differences,” says Pam Pruitt, Rider’s director of Multicultural Affairs. “It’s a beautiful tradition to follow, especially because the tapestry of our university is so diverse.”

Students, faculty, staff and the surrounding community are invited to join the intimate ceremony, which will feature singing by the Unashamed Gospel Choir and interpretive dance by Rider Dance Ensemble. Hot chocolate, apple cider and cookies will be served.

The tradition dates back to 1991, when a group of Rider students gathered at the Lawrenceville campus’s main gate to celebrate multicultural traditions. Starting with only a handful of traditions (Diwali, Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa and Three Kings Day), the event continues to add new ones (Ramadan, Boxing Day and Winter Solstice).

“Hopefully, the event will move us all toward that time of peace, love, justice, joy, respect, understanding and unity that seems to prevail throughout the traditions of many cultures,” Pruitt says. 

For more information, call 609-895-5781.

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The annual event will be held Thursday, Nov. 21, from 5-6 p.m. in the SRC atrium.